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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                                Contact: Carolyn Bonifas Kelly 703.801.9212 (cell)
Wednesday, October 24, 2018                                                      Rocky Moretti 202.262.0714 (cell)
Report available at: tripnet.org                                                     TRIP office 202.466.6706

TWENTY PERCENT OF BATON ROUGE BRIDGES ARE STRUCTURALLY DEFICIENT. NEW REPORT IDENTIFIES BRIDGES IN BATON ROUGE AREA THAT ARE MOST IN NEED OF REPAIR OR REPLACEMENT

Eds.: The report includes a list of bridges in the Baton Rouge area with the lowest average rating for the condition of the deck, superstructure and substructure, and a list of the most heavily traveled structurally deficient bridges in the area.

Baton Rouge, LA – Twenty percent of bridges (20 feet or longer) in the Baton Rouge area (which includes East Baton Rouge and West Baton Rouge Parishes) are structurally deficient, according to a new report released today by TRIP, a Washington, DC based national nonprofit transportation research group. A bridge is structurally deficient if there is significant deterioration of the bridge deck, supports or other major components.

The TRIP report, "Preserving Baton Rouge Bridges: The Condition and Funding Needs of Baton Rouge’s Aging Bridge System," finds that in the Baton Rouge area, 122 of the 613 bridges are structurally deficient – a total of 20 percent. Bridges in the Baton Rouge area that are structurally deficient carry approximately 419,000 vehicles per day.  Structurally deficient bridges may be posted for lower weight limits or closed if their condition warrants such action. Deteriorated bridges can have a significant impact on daily life. Restrictions on vehicle weight may cause many vehicles – especially emergency vehicles, commercial trucks, school buses and farm equipment – to use alternate routes to avoid weight-restricted bridges. Redirected trips also lengthen travel time, waste fuel and reduce the efficiency of the local economy.

TRIP has prepared a statewide report on bridge conditions throughout Louisiana as well as regional reports for Alexandria, Baton Rouge, Lafayette, Lake Charles, Monroe, New Orleans and Shreveport. Each report is available by clicking on the link above.

The chart below details the 10 most heavily traveled structurally deficient bridges in the Baton Rouge area. A list of the 25 most heavily traveled structurally deficient bridges in the region is available in the report

The following 10 structurally deficient bridges in the Baton Rouge area (carrying a minimum of 500 vehicles per day) have the lowest average rating for deck, substructure and superstructure.  Each major component of a bridge is rated on a scale of zero to nine, with a score of four or below indicating poor condition. If a bridge receives a rating of four or below for its deck, substructure or superstructure, it is rated as structurally deficient. A list of the 25 bridges in the New Orleans area with the lowest average sufficiency rating is included in the report.

"Louisiana's bridges are a critical component of the state's transportation system, providing connections for personal mobility, economic growth and quality of life," said Will Wilkins, TRIP's executive director. "Without increased and reliable transportation funding, numerous projects to improve and preserve Louisiana's aging bridges will not move forward, hampering the state's ability to efficiently and safety move people and goods."